Penghou

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The hōkō as imagined by Toriyama Sekien.
"Houkou" redirects here. It is not to be confused with Hukou.

The Pénghoú (彭侯) is a tree spirit from Chinese folklore. It is described in an old book called the Soushenji (搜神記, English "In Search of the Supernatural"):

The P'eng-hou in the Camphor Tree
In the time of the First Ruler of Wu, Lu Ching-shu was Grand Protector of Chien-an Commandery. Once he dispatched a man to cut down a great camphor tree. Few strokes of the axe had fallen before blood suddenly flowed from the trunk. When it was finally felled, a creature with the face of a man and the body of a dog came forth.
Ching-shu explained, "This is what is known as the p'eng-hou." He had it steamed forthwith and ate it. Its flavor was the same as dog-meat.
The Pai-tse T'u* says: "The spirit of trees is called p'eng-hou. It appears much like a black dog with no tail and can be steamed and eaten".

*The long lost tome of the Bai Ze.

The Pénghoú (read in Japanese as Hōkō 彭侯)[1] was included in the "Konjaku Hyakki Shūi, one of Toriyama Sekien's collections of monster illustrations."[1] Sekien gave it the same description as "the Soushenji, as well as having it live in a thousand-year-old tree."[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Konjaku Hyakki Shūi
  2. ^ [1]